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Miller Maxstar Buyers Guide: Choosing the Right Machine for You

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This blog post is an in-depth comparison of several models of the Miller Maxstar series, including the Maxstar 161 STL and STH, Maxstar 210 and 280, and the Maxstar 400 and Maxstar 800. By understanding the unique features and capabilities of each model, you can make a decision about which one best suits your welding requirements.


Maxstar 161 portability

The Miller Maxstar 161 STL and STH are compact and lightweight welding machines built with portability in mind. Both models offer exceptional arc performance (6010 Electrode Capability) and feature advanced inverter technology. The Maxstar 161 STL & STH are both DC welders with no option of AC. Both machines also go up to 160 amps, the biggest difference between the two is the STH can do High Frequency and Pulsed TIG.

Once you decide between the STL or STH model, you need to pick a package. Take a look at the package options available for the Maxstar 161. 

Maxstar 161 Guide

MAXSTAR 210 & 280

The next step up in the lineup is the Maxstar 210. The Maxstar 210 is a DC only inverter welder that can push 210 amps with a 60% duty cycle. There are three different variations of the 210. They are the Maxstar 210 STR, Maxstar 210, and Maxstar 210 DX. The differences between the models is best shown in the graph below.

Maxstar 210 Guide

 Some notable takeaways from the graph are that the STR power source is only Lift arc TIG and cannot pulse. On the Maxstar 210 and 210 DX, high frequency becomes available in addition to pulse capability. The largest difference between the 210 and the 210 DX is that the DX model has a sequencer. The sequencer gives the operator control over a variety of parameters.

Overall the Maxstar 210 is a step up from the 161 series. One major included feature on the 210's is the "Pro Set" feature. However, if you are after portability, the 161 series is still your best bet.

The Maxstar 280 follows the same format as the 210 series, but with only two options. The Maxstar 280 and the Maxstar 280 DX. Both can do pulsed TIG but the Maxstar 280 DX has a sequencer, giving you much more control over your welds. You can see the difference between the front control panels below.

Maxstar 280 Front comparison

MAXSTAR 400 & 800

For heavy-duty welding tasks and industrial applications, the Miller Maxstar 400 and Maxstar 800 are what can get the job done. The Maxstar 400 and 800 can push 400 or 800 amps both with a 60% duty cycle.

Maxstar 400 Application photo

These machines are made to be tuned to perfection for your weld process. In addition to the power and adjustability of these machines they are also adaptable. Miller offers a variety of packages for both machines, some offering cooling systems and carts to keep your machine running all day. Take a look at the image below to get an idea of the package options.

Maxstar 400 and 800


The Miller Maxstar lineup offers a range of welding machines to cater to various needs, from lightweight portability to heavy-duty industrial applications. Miller Electric's commitment to quality trusted name ensures that whichever Maxstar model you choose, you can rely on it for your welding projects. If you have any questions regarding availability or compatibility, reach out to our support team! The team can be reached at 877-930-5690 or at support@bakersgas.com.

Evan H.


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